The Purpose Of A Compare And Contrast Essay – Academic Writing Tips


There are numerous different types of essays that students can be set as part of an academic course. One of these varieties is the compare and contrast essay. The following will outline what this academic paper hopes to achieve, as well as providing some writing tips to enable you to succeed when writing one of your own.

What is required from a compare and contrast essay

As part of this kind of academic paper you will essentially be taking two or more topics based around a similar theme. There is no set subject in which compare and contrast papers are exclusively used; therefore, you may find that you need to write such an essay for a wide range of different subjects that you are studying.

An example of a compare and contrast paper might be to compare and contrast the different ideologies held by two separate political parties. In this example, as part of the essay, you will need to identify any similarities that the two political parties may share, as well as identifying any differences in their ideology, and what they hope to achieve.

Whether you are writing a paper for a historical or political subject, or any other subject, you take the same principles of identifying any common ground between the two topics that you are comparing, as well as outlining any major differences that may exist as well.

Thinking of good topics to use for a compare and contrast academic paper

The topics that you may choose to write about will vary depending on what subject or course you’re studying at the time. However, it is a good idea to try and pick two different topics that are similar enough that you can make good comparisons, yet different enough that you can contrast them effectively.

Be sure to include both sides of the story

No matter what topic you choose to write about, it is important that you approach your paper by looking at the point of view of each different topic. Equally, you need to examine it in as balanced a way as possible, in terms of both the similarities and differences that may exist.

You may wish to argue that one side is better than the other; however, in order to do this, you need to have looked at both sides objectively, in a balanced way.

Checking the work once you are done

Finally, in order to ensure the high quality of your work, you need to proofread and edit the work before you hand it in.